Owners and participants have been filling in their entry forms and so far the numbers look positive for the next St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, organizers reported in December. The event takes place March 4 to 7 2010 and will include the pre-event Budget Marine Match Racing Cup on March 2 as well as the GILL Commodores Cup on March 4th. Organizers are pleased with the commitments made thus far, online as well as verbal.
George David’s 90-foot Reichel/Pugh-designed Rambler, in its first appearance at this race, will bring an exciting mix to the 30th edition of this event, listing what some may call the stars of sailing from around the world as the crew. With a long list of wins including the 2007 Nordbank Transatlantic Race, 2007 Middle Sea Race, 2008 Buenos Aires to Rio Race as well as setting the course record in the 2009 NYYC Queens Cup, Rambler is sure to set the bar for others who race against her.
Rambler will be skippered by the owner George David joined by Ken Read, Vice President of North Sails North America, two-time winner of the United States Rolex Yachtsman of the year, and skipper of the Puma Racing Team il Mostro for the 2008-2009 Volvo Ocean Race; and Jerry Kirby who has raced with Pirate of the Caribbean and was bowman of the Puma il Mostro as well as a two-time veteran of the Volvo Ocean Race. With twenty three crew listed to participate, organizers are pleased to see some of the top racers visit St. Maarten.
In addition, 80 charter boats from both Sunsail and Moorings have been confirmed, and it looks as if the bareboat fleet will maintain its large numbers for another year. In 2008, the event hosted a record 125 Bareboats while that number dropped slightly in 2009 to 105. The charter boat fleet is the largest of this event as well as the largest of all the Caribbean regattas and organizers work closely with the charter companies, travel planners and individuals to assure that fair racing and competitive sailing is accomplished.
Organizer Heather Tackling reports, “With technology being one of our main sources of contact to the sailors around the world, the regatta office is working
with Anton Von de Koppel and Quest Media to bring our island, the Yacht Club, and the event to the world by means of Visual information pieces. We will be broadcasting on YouTube and the regatta site as well as Facebook and Twitter, a series of four to five video clips addressing certain topics about the island. The first one is out and on YouTube and mainly describes the Yacht Club, what we have to offer, the regatta website and how to navigate it. We are pleased to be able to bring yet another innovative idea to the event and credit goes to Quest Media who continually work on our behalf to keep the event ahead of the game.
Report submitted by St. Maarten Heineken Regatta